Police make arrest after safe with credit cards, loved one’s ashes is stolen

JOHNSON COUNTY, Ind. – An 18-year-old is facing multiple charges, accused of taking items from a Greenwood home, including a safe containing the ashes of a man's father.

Jacob Fancher said his family’s alarm didn’t go off on the night of April 23. Shortly before 6 a.m. he woke up and heard something downstairs, and heard the door slam from what he later learned was the wind. He grabbed a gun, cleared the house and called 911. He discovered the window screen has been cut, items were missing and security footage showed someone had been in the car.

"If there's one place people should be able to feel safe and secure, it's in the comfort of their own homes and when that sacred place is violated, it really has a long lasting negative impact on the people that it happens to," said Joe Villanueva, the chief deputy in the Johnson County Prosecutor's Office.

The homeowner said his Lexus, television, vehicle keys and other items were missing, as well as his safe. It contained credit cards, certificates and his father's ashes.

"It was through the use of some stolen credit or debit cards that they were able to actually track and locate where the suspect was almost in real time as the cards were being used," Villanueva said.

Greenwood police tracked the purchases to a Meijer. There, investigators said they found the car with a 65-inch television hanging out the back and 18-year-old Justin Allen hiding under a nearby van.

Police were able to recover the property and arrest Allen.

"Just make sure you set your alarms at night and you can't trust any area you live in," Fancher said.

"We take this very seriously in Johnson County," Villanueva said.

He said one reason for that is because these types of cases have the potential to take a turn quickly.

"We have a lot of people here in Johnson County who believe strongly in the second amendment and have firearms in their homes and you kick the wrong door in in Johnson County it may not be a burglary charge there may be no charge because you're leaving in a body bag," Villanueva said.

That didn't happen in this case. Allen is now facing charges of burglary, auto theft and fraud.

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